The Care Factor: Foundations and practice of supporting student success and wellbeing

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Presenters - Nalini Pather, Leesa Sidhu, Jacky Cranney, Gary Velan

International research has identified the need for a radical shift in the way we teach and support students’ success and wellbeing in higher education settings.

As educators, we are faced with the challenge to provide engaging and supportive learning environments that deliver positive, meaningful short-term and long-term outcomes for students. To facilitate these outcomes, the University needs to implement appropriate policies, procedures and supporting frameworks.

Featuring presenters from the Scientia Education Academy (SEA) and Co-Leads of UNSW’s Healthy University Initiative (HUI), our thought-leaders will discuss the rationale for a collaborative, coordinated and multifaceted approach that empowers our students to thrive.

About the Presenters

Photo of Nalini Pather

Nalini Pather  is a Professor at UNSW Medicine and a Scientia Education Fellow. She has extensive experience in higher education, having contributed to education in four countries including South Africa, USA and the UK. Nalini’s achievements have been recognised through a Vice Chancellor’s Award for Teaching Excellence and an Australian Award for University Teaching, amongst others. She leads the Federative International Program for Anatomical Education which represents a collaboration across 56 countries and is an Associate Editor of Anatomical Sciences Education and BMC Medical Education. Her interests in education focuses on the evidence-based implementation of innovative technologies and transferable skills in curriculum design and delivery. As a Scientia Education Fellow, Nalini co-leads the Healthy Universities Initiative.

Professor Jacquelyn Cranney

Jacky Cranney (Honorary Professor, Psychology) has won numerous UNSW, national and international education awards & Fellowships, particularly for her work in graduate competencies, psychological literacy, and academic self-management. As a Scientia Education Academy Fellow, she continues to co-lead the Healthy Universities Initiative, which emphasises curricular approaches to student self-management, success and wellbeing.


Dr Leesa Sidhu

Dr Leesa Sidhu (Deputy Head of School (Education), School of Science, UNSW Canberra) has extensive experience in developing and lecturing Statistics courses for Science, Engineering, Technology, Arts and Business students. She is a co-leader of the Healthy Universities Initiative, member of the EF Student Wellbeing (SW) Community of Practice (CoP) and leader of the EF SW CoP Curriculum Project. Leesa was the recipient of the inaugural Australian Mathematical Society Award for Teaching Excellence (2018), the UNSW Vice Chancellor's Award for Teaching Excellence (2017) and the UNSW Canberra Rector's Award for Teaching Excellence (2015).

Professor Gary Velan

Gary Velan is a Professor and former Head of the Dept of Pathology (2005-2016) as well as Director of Learning and Teaching Development (2011-2018) within the School of Medical Sciences. He was appointed Associate Dean (Education) in Medicine in 2016 and Senior Vice Dean (Education) in 2018. Gary’s achievements in education have been recognised within UNSW by two Vice Chancellor's Awards for Teaching Excellence (2003 and 2009) and a Vice Chancellor's Award for Programs that Enhance Learning (2016), at a state level by a NSW Minister of Education's Quality Teaching Award (2003), and at a national level by a Citation for Outstanding Contributions to Student Learning (2007) and a Teaching Excellence Award (2010) from the Federal Government’s Office for Learning and Teaching. Gary is the Co-Director of the Scientia Education Academy (July 2019 - present) and an Academic Mentor at UNSW.